Learn how to temporarily deactivate your Instagram account, or if you’re looking to make a real change, how to permanently delete it.
Instagram has taken the world by storm and most of us have the app on our phones. Frequently scrolling through the feed to look at pictures of your friend’s holidays, second-rate dinners, and generic face shots has become an all-too-common pastime of bored phone users around the world. This has actually caused many young people to consider Instagram the most damaging of all the major social media apps.
When polled, a large number of young people pointed out the app’s unintentional nature as a platform for people to highlight the best moments in their lives and thus create an inaccurate picture of the full story. Have you ever looked at your old school friends Instagram profiles and wondered how it is that they seem to spend more of their time on vacation than they do at work? Or how they always seem to be eating in some fancy restaurant. This user-made focus on trying to show off how ‘great’ their lives are has led many to seek to disable their Instagram account or delete it altogether.
It’s not like this is always the case. My own Instagram feed consists mainly of pictures of food cooked by professional chefs, short videos of people doing stunts on motorbikes, and Russian street photography (don’t ask). That being said, I often have to unfollow friends that I don’t often talk to because they just keep posting pictures of them in some club that I don’t need to see. The level of pointless BS on Instagram can make you wonder: is it even worth my time, and how else could I be better spending this time?
The Case for Instagram
It’s important in life not to strawman the things and arguments that you don’t like. So, to begin with, I’m going to point out the case FOR Instagram – maybe I can convince you not to delete it.
To begin with, what appears on the feed can ultimately be dictated by you. If your friends post pointless posts that you find soul destroying, then simply unfollow them – they won’t be notified and by doing it they’ll still be following you. In other words, they’ll probably be none the wiser. Next, follow pages that actually interest you. For me, it’s cooking, motorbikes, kendo, martial arts and human and natural photography. What interests you? There’s probably a page for it – check.
You don’t have to make the app a hollow lie about the people that you barely know and have no interest in – so cull them, and turn it into a vibrant, engaging feed of beautiful and inspiring images and recipe ideas. Or bums, who doesn’t like bums.
The Case Against Instagram
How much of your time would you consider meaningfully spent? For the vast majority of people, the answer would be a mere fraction. Instagram probably isn’t going to provide you with any real fulfillment. It’s not going to up your IQ, it’s not going to get you in shape, and it’s not going to give you the drive to learn a new skill. All things considered, it really is a complete waste of time (assuming you’re spending more than ten minutes on it per day).
The app really is full of people trying to make their lives look perfect. It’s a delusional thing, really. While people generally aren’t overly excited to look at the misery of other people (at least, not on social media), it has to be said that the app takes the positive elements to an exaggerated level. Do you really need to see people throwing their happy photos in your face every time you look at your phone?
How to Temporarily Disable Instagram
Maybe it’d be better if we spent some time apart, you know? It’s just that I’m feeling a little suffocated right now. Poor old Instagram, no one likes rejection, not least an app with social in its very fabric. But temporarily disabling it to see what the effects are might actually be the best way to figure out whether it’s worth having it or not. The bonus of this route is that if you change your mind, you won’t lose all your overly edited photos.
To temporarily remove Instagram, you’ll have to:
- Go to the Instagram website via your mobile or computer browser and log in.
- Go onto Edit Profile.
- Scroll down to where it says Temporarily disable my account.
- Click it. You’ll have to re-enter your password and tell them why you want to leave for a while.
- Done. Your profile will be invisible until you reactivate it.
How to Permanently Delete Your Instagram Profile
You’ve spent some time off and decided that Instagram is BS and you’re way more productive when you don’t have it. Or you just don’t care to disable it and want to take the plunge right away. Okay, let’s get to it.
- Before deleting make sure you backup your data by going to the Instagram website, selecting Settings, then going to Privacy and Security and clicking on Request Download under Data Download. Might as well keep those pics, right? Unless they’re all of your ex, then get shot of them.
- Go to the special Delete Your Account page
- Login if you have to.
- You will have to select a reason why you’re deleting the app.
- Press delete. Gone. Forever. Like, for-ever-ever-ever. Yay.
Now what to do with your glorious life?
Now you can do all those things like not be obsessed with other people. Read more. Go to the gym. Go hiking. Learn to cook. Learn French. Brew your own beer. Redownload Instagram. Learn to code. Who knows what you’ll end up doing.
Social media has its perks. It connects us in a way that has never been experienced before and it allows us to access information in a split second. But too much information breeds ignorance, and too much connection breeds loneliness. The world is still a big place, no matter what the pundits say, go out and explore it. My rule: don’t ever use more than two social media apps. It’s working out so far, although, after writing this article, I might delete one of them…